12 thoughts on “Ken Marcus’ Campus Jihad Against Anti-Israelism – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
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  1. Richard, as always, you make a compelling argument this is filled with important facts. That said, your thesis that Jewish students in general and pro-Israel students are not really being subjected to social, cultural and verbal harassment doesn’t stand up against eye witness accounts including my own.
    I comfortably and proudly identify myself as progressive Zionist who is opposed to the occupation. But I’m still a Zionist and I’ve heard angry, snide, condescending academics ridicule Israel and her supporters as nothing more than imperialist and bigots. Years ago, I found myself at a pro-Israel rally at SF State at the conclusion of which, dozens of anti-Israel students, many of Palestinian decent, physically surround Hillel students who had remained behind to clean up after the rally. The Hillel students were subject physical and verbal intimidation that was genuinely frightening. The mayhem only ended when campus police arrived to “escort” the Hillel students out of harms way. I can’t imagine that you would find that kind of behavior acceptable.
    The blogosphere has been filled with similar storied from other campuses. I too would not like to see the voices of those who challenge Israels policies to be silenced by pro-Israel laws, politicians or lawyers. That said, the sad reality of Jewish/pro-Israel student intimidation is phenomena that cannot be denied, even by those of us who many identify with J-Steet, Shalom Achshav, Michael Lerner, etc.

    1. I spent 12 yrs studying on multiple campuses in this country & Israel. I know what the discourse & debate is like on this issue. I also know that the amt of hatred, threats & intimidation I face writing this blog pales in comparison to anything you or any other pro Israel student on campus has experienced. Not to mention that you ought to acknowledge the tremendous amt of hate spewed against Jewish activists on campus who oppose Israeli policy.

      1. I’m really disappointed and surprised that such a courageous, intelligent person as yourself would play the victim card and suggest that valid points made are invalidated by important facts missed. I expected more from you Richard.

        1. A bissel hypocritical, no? You first trot out the horrors suffered on campus by yr friends. That’s REAL suffering. Then when I tell you my own experiences pale in comparison to whatever you’re recounting…all of a sudden I’m playing the victim card. Would you like to see a sampling say of my 100 Greatest Smear-Hits? Would that make you change yr tune? Or is yr friend’s suffering the only suffering that counts?

          And pls. stop with the concern troll approach (“I expected more from you…”). It’s not persuasive.

          1. Well excuse for being very impressed with your courageous and insightful blog. I’ll try to remember that on a personal level, you are very sensitive and don’t take criticism well. (Intertesting that it took you 3 days to respond to my last comment here. This didn’t have anything to do with my correcting your spelling of “Fisher” yesterday, did it?) Yes Richard, we all now affirm that you are the most victimized critic of Israel in the world.

  2. RE: “Marcus is one of the key intellectual authors of a new campaign to exploit newly written federal civil rights statutes (Title VI) which forbid campuses from creating a hostile environment for various ethnic and religious groups, including Jews.” ~ R.S.

    SAME AS IT EVER WAS, SAME AS IT EVER WAS: The Trial of Israel’s Campus Critics, by David Theo Goldberg and Saree Makdisi, Tikkun Magazine, September/October 2009

    (excerpt)…It is an extraordinary fact that no fewer than thirty-three distinct organizations – including AIPAC, the Zionist Organization of America, the American Jewish Congress, and the Jewish National Fund – are gathered together today as members or affiliates of the Israel on Campus Coalition. The coalition is an overwhelmingly powerful presence on American college campuses for which there is simply no equivalent on the Palestinian or Arab side. Its self-proclaimed mission is not merely to monitor our colleges and universities. That, after all, is the commitment of Campus Watch, which was started by pro-Israel activists in 2002. It is, rather (and in its own words), to generate “a pro-active, pro-Israel agenda on campus.”
    There is, accordingly, disproportionate and unbalanced intervention on campuses across the country by a coalition of well-funded organizations, who have no time for — and even less interest in — the niceties of intellectual exchange and academic process. Insinuation, accusation, and defamation have become the weapons of first resort to respond to argument and criticism directed at Israeli policies. As far as these outside pressure groups (and their campus representatives) are concerned, the intellectual and academic price that the scholarly community pays as a result of this kind of intervention amounts to little more than collateral damage…

    ENTIRE ARTICLE – http://www.tikkun.org/article.php/sept_oct_09_goldberg_makdisi

  3. Is it possible to not be anti-Semite and to not be anti-Israel (indeed, perhaps actually being pro-semite and pro-Israel), while still being anti-Israeli government policy.

    I have long concluded that the greatest danger to the survival of Israel rests with the Israelis themselves. I believe Israel has had many opportunities to foster peace, and yet typically chooses to perpetuate its enemies.

    It would be an interesting debate (if a honest debate could be had) to compare the arguments that hostility exists today on US campuses to Jews as a result of a) anti-Semitism, or b) opposition (and exhaustion) to Israeli policies.

  4. Wasn’t there something titled the David Project that went about various campuses doing McCarthyite sorts of intimidation against those critical of Israel? I seem to recall Columbia U., just up the street from where I live, being fairly hard hit by this bunch, including none other than Anthony Weiner of recent negative fame…. And, yes, of course, some attacks on Israeli occupation policy, with all its disgusting ramifications, are fueled by good old classic anti-Semitism, its adherents happy to have a solid anti-Jewish cause celebre. However, those whom I know who are appalled at Israeli outrages, and verbalize their anger, including non-self-hating Jews like myself, attack Israeli policy because, by God, it should be – period.

  5. Usually agencies have separate departments that write regulations. Isn’t it extremely unusual for a litigator inside an agency to write a regulation? I wonder what gave Marcus the clout to be able to do so.

  6. “When you confuse Israel with Judaism you get into a terribly sticky wicket.”
    Excellent point, Richard.
    Some, although not all, of those like Marcus who defend Tel Aviv are defending what has actually become a religion. Those who refuse to worship Baal ;; woops, I mean Tel Aviv, are considered impious. Thus Marcus et al are doing battle against impiety.

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